MSU set to face familiar offense in Wyoming

After facing spread teams recently, Michigan State is set to set a pro-style offense Saturday -- one that resembles theirs quite a bit.

Michigan State’s defense has seen plenty of spread offenses so far this season, but this Saturday against Wyoming will bring a different look.

Sophomore linebacker Riley Bullough is looking forward to the return to a pro-style football team and the challenges it presents.

“Wyoming is a good football team,” he said. “They gave Oregon a run for their money for the first half. They got a great coaching staff. They run a pro-style offense so we’re looking forward to go against that, more traditional Big Ten style.”

First-year Wyoming head coach Craig Bohl has spent with Michigan State’s coaching staff in the past while coaching at North Dakota State, where he saw much success in winning three consecutive FCS championships.

Coach Mark Dantonio thinks the familiarity could help his team.

“They are probably more like us than anybody we've played actually,” Dantonio said. “So I think that's a positive for us.”

Bullough sees the similarities on offense and can’t wait to get back to the style of football he grew up enjoying, power football.

“It’s a little bit similar and easy for us since all of fall camp and spring ball we’re going up against it with our offense,” Bullough said. “I’m looking forward to it. I love playing pro-style offenses. It’s more down-hill, power football, what I grew up playing, so I’m comfortable with it.”

The Cowboys have two running backs that carry the load in junior Shaun Wick (66 rushes for 404 yards) and sophomore D.J. May (47 rushes for 221 yards). At wide receiver, senior Dominic Rufran (17 receptions for 291 yards) leads the way.

”I think their tailbacks are excellent,” Dantonio said. “Outstanding wide receiver that is on the Biletnikoff list, streak of 41 games where he's caught a pass. Going to try and play physical defensively, collectively run very well, a lot of different things they do.

”They want to be a two-back team. They have a good fullback. They want to run the football. A lot of what they do is similar to us in that respect.”

Junior defensive tackle Lawrence Thomas noted the similarities between the offenses but said they are just trying to take each week at a time and improve.

“It’s got the same style, run and pass,” Thomas said. “So we just practice our offense and basically see the same exact thing when we play our offense so we just gotta do what we gotta do.

”We’re just taking it one step at a time. We’re just trying to play physical, just go out here and do what we do, every day. Play Spartan Dawg defense and just come out ready to compete.”

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